How to Use Ketone Strips to Stay in Ketosis

If you are new to the world of low carb, you may have come across people talking about ketone strips or “ketostix” to see if they are in ketosis. These are small strips to test your urine to see if you have ketones in it. It is a roundabout way to see if you are in ketosis. Here is a guide to your most common questions about how to use ketone strips and if they are right for you!

Ketone Strips FAQ

What Are Ketone Strips Used For?
Ketostix are used to help track when someone is in ketosis. Sometimes people use them to see how many carbs they can consume and stay in ketosis. For most people this range is from 40-55 net carbs a day. For other, it can be as low as 20 carbs per day. Also, it can be used to help determine what foods may interfering with ketosis. For some people, dairy products, artificial sweeteners, or high fiber foods (giving a high carb content, but low net carb result) will take them out of ketosis. Using these strips can help one figure out what the problem is if they are not staying in ketosis or losing weight.

How To Use Ketone Strips:
You take a strip and dip it into your urine. Generally it is better to dip it into a cup with urine in it, rather than passing through your urine stream. This is because if your stream is too strong, you could potentially wash all the reagent off of the strip and get a false negative result. Either way, dip it, and remove immediately. Usually the bottle will tell you how long to wait, but as a general rule, you will see your results in seconds. After a minute, the results are no longer valid.

How Accurate Are They?
They are very accurate at showing if you are passing ketones in your urine, so the rate of a FALSE positive is very low. However, you can be in ketosis WITHOUT having ketones in your urine. If this is the case, you would get a false negative. This is because you are measuring ketones in your urine, not your blood. Some people use their ketones more efficiently, and  make less of them, therefore they don’t “spill” into the urine.  Also, as a person spends more time in ketosis, such as several months, lower levels of ketones are detected in the urine, even while they are still burning fat and following the ketogenic diet well.

What Brand Should You Use?
There is no specific brand that is superior. I personally like SmackFat, which has 100 strips and has a 4.5 star rating on amazon. You can check it out here: Smackfat Ketone Strips {affiliate link}

What Are Other ways to Know You Are in Ketosis?
Ketones can be detected in the breath, blood or urine. Testing the urine with ketone strips is generally the quickest and easiest method. They make disposable breath ketone tests, which you can check out here: Disposable Breath Ketone Test {affiliate link} They also make blood ketone meters.

What is The Best Way to Detect Ketosis?
The most accurate way to detecting ketosis would be a blood test. They now make blood meters that measure ketones in your blood similar to a blood sugar test. In fact most of the monitors made can do both, as they are designed for diabetics. You simply prick your finger and put a drop of blood onto the reagent strip and plug it into the meter. I personally like the Precision Xtra Blood Glucose and Ketone Monitoring System {affiliate link}

What Do The Darker Colors Mean?
Ketone strips usually range from white/cream color which is negative, to purple, which means large ketones are being passed in the urine. But a darker strip does not correlate with “more” ketosis. You are either in or out of it. A purple strip is more of a sign of DEHYDRATION. You may notice your back hurts more when the strips are purple. This means your kidneys are under stress. Remember that ketosis puts you in somewhat of a water wasting state. It is important to stay hydrated in this process!

ketone color

 

 

 

 

Happy Ketosis! ~HealthyGirl

P.S. Have I answered all your questions about ketone strips? Comment below!

 

Upcycled Wine Bottle Crafts and More….

So this post will be a little off topic, but as you may know, I tend to get off topic here and there. Today I wanted to share some of my projects with you guys. You see…as it turns out you don’t instantly start making money once you graduate from PA school. You have to pass your boards, wait for your medical license, find a job, and then wait to be credentialed. It all takes several months. A graduation in April would likely lead to a job in August. So In the mean time, I have taken a position as a scribe, where I chart what the docs and PAs say, and write up their notes for them. In my off time, I like to craft! I wanted to share with you guys a few crafts that I have been up to lately! The most common craft I have started with was wine bottle crafts. I am still learning the ropes however, as getting the labels off can be quite tricky. I also tried to cut the neck off of a wine bottle using the acetone string method several times, which to my disappointment, did not work. Bashing it against a brick wall didn’t work either haha. I made a shattered mess! Anyways, here are some of my designs..please leave a comment below and let me know what you think!

 

These are some of my upcycled wine bottle deigns. With a little fish netting and pain, these junk pieces of glass turned into timeless turquoise treasures! The pair is $28 or $15 for a single bottle. Customization available.

Turqoise Wine Bottle Craft

With the 4th of July coming up…how could I NOT make something patriotic? So I upcycled some other bottles in the theme of the american flag. Of course it does not have all 50 stars and 13 stripes, but it is still pretty awesome! The set is $28 or $15 each.

American Flag Wine Bottle Craft

Next is one of my favorite crafts, a microwave/freezer safe rice filled neck wrap. This wrap is double sewn for quality and strength. It is partially compartmentalized to keep the heat/cold evenly distributed. I particularly love the model here, he seems to be relaxing himself. However he is not for sale. 😉 The neck wrap however, $26.

Microwavable Heat Pack

 

These were some of my first crafting ideas, wine bottle crafts, and I truly enjoyed making them. This particular set is a set of three, although you can order single or a pair if you’d like. They make great table and book shelf decorations. Also, these bottles don’t have a single thing done to the inside, so if you wanted to refill these with water or wine and have a fancy serving bottle, you could! Set of three is $38

tres amigos Upcycled Wine Bottle Crafts

This is a wagon wheel flower I just learned how to crochet. Many more to come, in a variety of colors and sizes. It took me over an hour to learn, but hopefully the next ones will come a bit faster. This particular flower is $3.99 with free shipping!

wagon wheel crochet flower

This particular design is similar to the “tres amigos” of grape wine bottle decor above, However I used more grape like leaves and frosted beads for the grapes. $15

Frosted Grape Wine Bottle

 

This last design was fun to make, as I got to figure out which sea shells would fit through the bottle. Later, when more skill comes I might be able to fit bigger shells inside. The top is tied with a nautical knot, and beach sand is inside the bottle. If one were to order a bottle, the shells would come in a separate bag, so they wouldn’t get lost in the sand. Single bottle $15

sea shell wine bottle craft

If you have ideas for more crafts for me to make, or special requests, let me know! You can check out my Etsy shop here or click at the link at the top of the page. Even a simple “favorite” of my shop would help out tremendously!

Thanks for stopping by,

~HealthyGirl

Home Remedies…A Guest Post by Nancy Madlin

I love home remedies. My mother often used them on me as a child, and I learned to love their wonderful smells and soothing sensations. As I grew up I was fascinated to learn that oils, herbs and other home remedies have been documented in use for millennia, starting with ancient Greece and China. Today I’m thrilled whenever I get the chance to share my enthusiasm for this kind of self-care at home.

 

One good example is essential oils. They are widely available now at a variety of price points starting as low as five dollars, and can help support health in so many ways. The two most versatile essentials oils are probably peppermint and lavender, and each has so many useful applications they would be a great addition to anyone’s medicine cabinet.

Some uses for peppermint oil

peppermint

* Soothes headaches. Dabbing a small quantity onto your finger, and then on forehead, temples and the nape of the neck can soothe a headache in minutes with a cooling sensation and the ability to relax muscles.

* Relieves bloating and indigestion. Try a few drops of peppermint oil in a glass of water cold, or heat it up and have soothing peppermint tea.

* Freshens breath and reduces cavities. Studies have shown that peppermint is more effective than the most popular mouthwash ingredient at reducing cavities. Its antimicrobial properties also make it excellent at freshening breath. A drop of peppermint under your tongue followed by a glass of water can do the trick, after you brush or whenever you need a breath freshener.

Lavender may be the most popular and versatile

Lavender

With lavender oil, you can:

* Calm anxiety, ease depression, wind down for bed, improve sleep. Lavender oil is so soothing, it has even been shown in scientific studies to reduce PTSD! There are many ways to use it for these purposes: Place a few drops in your palm, then rub your hands together, inhaling as you rub it on your cheeks, cupping hands in front of your face for awhile and inhaling. Or, rub a drop on the bottom of each foot. And my favorite, take an aromatherapy bath by dropping 10 drops of lavender oil onto salt, sea salt

or Epsom salt then swish it in the bathwater. (The salt disperses the oil through the water.)

* Aid healing of burns, sunburn, cuts, scrapes, wounds, exzema, canker sores. Ten drops of lavender oil in one ounce of liquid oil or coconut oil rubbed on these conditions can speed healing.

Talk to your doctor before using oil for conditions you are already treating. If you are already taking medications for sleep or depression, lavender oil can increase the effect, so talk to your doctor first. That same caution is also advised if you are pregnant.

While none of this article replaces qualified medical advice for any conditions, many people have found home remedies to be a safe and personally empowering way to support their health at home.

Nancy MadlinNancy Madlin is a healer in Warwick, NY passionate about physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Join her Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/AllKindsofGoodHealth/?ref=bookmarks. As an EFT practitioner, she assists people in setting and reaching goals. Her email is: goodenergyforlife@yahoo.com.